Swiss Farms Adopts Microsoft Dynamics AX for Retail as It Prepares for Expansion

REDMOND, Wash. — Jan. 18, 2010 — Microsoft Corp. today announced that Swiss Farms has selected Microsoft Dynamics AX for Retail to support its launch of a corporate and franchise system and to integrate its point-of-sale data with back-office operations. Microsoft Dynamics AX for Retail is a powerful solution that links point-of-sale terminals with the Microsoft Dynamics AX comprehensive business-management solution. AX for Retail was previewed last week at the National Retail Federation Annual Convention & Expo in New York and is expected to be available in summer of this year.

Swiss Farms, established in 1968, is a growing drive-through convenience grocery store retailer based in the Philadelphia, Pa., area. It currently operates 13 stores and is about to launch a franchise operation that is expected to add 100 franchisees within five years. Swiss Farms’ expansion was inhibited previously by the point-of-sale software that it had been using on disparate computer systems with a lack of integration and functionality.

“We needed to be able to scale more rapidly as we begin our franchising efforts, and it was important to be able to integrate our sales points with back-office financials,” said Swiss Farms President Paul Friel. “Our previous technology didn’t offer these capabilities and lacked functionality for tracking franchise sales, customer loyalty, inventory or Web ordering. With Microsoft Dynamics AX for Retail, we gained every one of these features and more.”

Swiss Farms chose Microsoft Dynamics AX for Retail after an in-depth evaluation process. Working with Microsoft Gold Certified Partner Columbus IT, an early global partner in the development of Microsoft Dynamics AX, Swiss Farms selected Microsoft’s solution over other industry-specific retail solutions. Swiss Farms becomes the first Microsoft Dynamics AX for Retail customer in the United States and is anticipating considerable benefits from the solution’s implementation.

“With Microsoft Dynamics AX for Retail, we will be able to maintain a single database that incorporates sales and customer information from all stores,” Friel said. “We’ll also be able to better control and centralize pricing at the point-of-sale terminals. This solution will suggest the size and quantity of items we should order, based on sales trends mined from the database, and recommend how goods should be distributed among stores.”

Microsoft Dynamics AX for Retail is expected to offer Swiss Farms the following benefits as well:

  • Low total cost of ownership through a single integrated system that replaces several standalone systems, each of which had required maintenance and upgrading

  • Online ordering capability

  • End-to-end integration of customer and sales data

  • Full retail capabilities, from powerful price management to point-based customer loyalty programs and automatically generated end-of-day statements

  • Business intelligence at both the store and corporate levels, enabling much more precise planning than before

  • The ability to launch franchise stores and gather financial data from them into a single database through a system that scales with the company’s expansion

“We are honored and excited to be a partner in Swiss Farms’ growth and expansion through deploying an integrated retail system from Microsoft that provides the customer service and business intelligence they are seeking to enable rapid and efficient growth,” said Steven Thomas, senior vice president of Columbus IT.

Microsoft Dynamics AX for Retail will provide a robust foundation on which Swiss Farms can pursue its growth vision of a well-established local brand and unique shopping concept through franchise operations, with a focus on customer service.

“Microsoft Dynamics AX for Retail is about to transform the nation’s retail sector, integrating point-of-sale locations with back-end operations to provide a new level of business intelligence,” said David Willis, corporate vice president for Microsoft’s U.S. Dynamics business. “It will enable companies like Swiss Farms to expand rapidly, through franchising and capital stores, with the ability to analyze and control inventory and customer sales for every outlet.”

About Swiss Farms

Swiss Farms, headquartered in Broomall, Pa., is a drive-through convenience grocery retailer chain. The company began in 1968 as the retail outlet for a family owned and operated dairy. The neighborhood stores have been providing fresh products to their loyal customers in a unique, fast and friendly format that sets them apart from other small grocery or convenience stores. Swiss Farms today is in the process of re-inventing itself and its brand. The company recently opened a new prototype store and is making investments in technology and design, preparing to expand aggressively in the northeast.

In 2009 Swiss launched a franchise operation that is expected to add 100 franchisees within five years.

About Columbus IT

Columbus IT, Microsoft’s Retail Partner of the Year, operates in 30 countries, with more than 1,100 employees, and has implemented Microsoft business solutions for more than 20 years, with some 5,000 successful implementations in 101 countries. Its consulting and development teams were first to work with Microsoft Dynamics AX in 1999 and have been implementing it from version 1.

About Microsoft Dynamics

Microsoft Dynamics is a line of easy-to-use, integrated and adaptable ERP and CRM applications that enable business decision-makers to quickly respond to market shifts, take advantage of new trends, increase their competitive edge and drive business success. Microsoft Dynamics solutions are delivered through a world-class network of partners who provide specialized services and additional innovation to help customers excel in their industry.

About Microsoft

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.

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